WRITTEN BY JEROME YAOVI ONIPEDE
The Nigerian Civil War started on the 6th of July 1967, and I was born 14 days later, 20th of July 1967. I WAS BORN INTO A WAR, and I have been fighting triumphantly since then. I was told that when I was born,
the Nurses on duty shouted “SOLDIER HAS COME”. My Father Anthonio Kwaovi Onipede was unavailable to witness my birth, but he had no choice, he wasn’t there because he had been arrested by some over 6 feet tall
Soldiers from the Nigerian Army all from the Northern part of Nigeria. He was arrested because he had grown some beard, and looked so much like Colonel Ojukwu at that time, and everyone or anyone that looked like
Colonel Ojukwu was not spared. They were all taken into custody, and interrogated over and over again. EVERYONE HAD BECOME A CASUALTY OF THE WAR, INCLUDING A NEW BORN BABY AND THE UNBORN CHILD.
During the time of my birth, some women in the Eastern part of the Nigeria who were pregnant at that time never had a chance to give birth to the children in their wombs, neither were the women spared as well, because their bellies were cut open, with the babies brought out and dismembered. It was at a time like this that God chose to have me come into this World, because THE ALMIGHTY GOD NEVER WAITS FOR WHAT WE CONSIDER TO BE A PERFECT MOMENT TO DO A PERFECT WORK. So I was born as the 7th Child my Mother Joanna Ebunoluwa Onipede nee Borges da-Silva was giving birth to, and in the 7th Month of the 1967th year.
Before I was born, my Mother had lost 2 sons to death, and so when she gave birth to me, she decided to call me Samuel, and right there made a Covenant with the Lord, that this Child was the Lord’s, AND SHE ASKED THAT THE LORD WILL FIND ME WORTHY TO SERVE HIM. And so you see I AM A COVENANT CHILD, AND I KNOW THAT!
So why am I not called Samuel today as my mother would have me called? Well because my Maternal Grandfather Vincenti Olawale Borges da-Silva immediately sent the name Jerome to my Parents saying he shall be called JEROME. The name Jerome actually means “SACRED”, you may need to understand that Sacred means “Dedicated or devoted to a single use, purpose, or person”, and also means “Connected with or intended for a religious use”. While the name ONIPEDE means “THE ONE THAT INTERVENES WILL COME”. For those of you that actually know me personally, you will realize that what I have been doing all my life is “intervening in people’s lives. And so through the names I was given, my destiny was made very clear,
which is why I have been very consistent at what I do.
And if you are kind enough to be reading this now, you will realize that
through the events of your own lives, you can find God in its Details.
And so for me, I AM ONE SET APART FOR THE USE OF GOD, TO BRING ABOUT GODLY INTERVENTION IN THE LIVES OF MEN. This stubborn truth about my live is cast in the blood of Jesus Christ.
Because it’s not good for Man to be alone, while I was 12 years old God set my eyes on Lawrenta Omono Okosun. She was 11 years old then, and I remember that her Image in my mind wouldn’t go away. We started dating while I was 19, and she, 18, and we legally got married while I was 22, and she, 21. We studied together, worked together, and have raised a Family together. While I write this, Lawrenta has spent 31 years of my 50
years on earth with me. We have practically grown doing everything together, and still are.
Lawrenta and I are Lovers, because WE ARE FIRST FORGIVERS.
We are Lovers, because in our Marriage we have learnt to always submit to God when it
comes to issues between us, and through God we always have the Grace to submit to each other.
You see even in our worst moments together, we have NEVER thought we were not meant for each other, and so the first thing we settled was this is a Marriage joined by God, and even “US” was not going to put asunder. Right now, we are helping other Couples to see their Marriages differently too.
And so what better gift can I ask God for at 50 that He has not already given me in Lawrenta Omono Okosun. To be frank with you, I never believed someone as wonderful as Lawrenta existed until God brought her my way. She is a very wise woman, and her genuine love for me fills me with Gratitude to God.
I pray for her always.
Over the years though, I have also met some SINCERE PEOPLE THAT HAVE TOUCHED MY LIFE, and I will like to appreciate them, but not in a particular order. As I remember, I write, but don’t be upset if you don’t see your name here as I will keep updating as I remember, and if your name never shows up, it doesn’t change the fact that you are highly valued by God, and in His Book of remembrance.
I say a big thank you to my Parents Anto and JO, as they fondly called
each other. My Father taught me so many things like; How to go shopping
for household items, how to polish my shoes, which is why when you look at
my shoes till today, they always shine. It wasn’t a big deal to take my
Sons to School, even as far as NYSC Camps when they went for National
Service, because my Father did all that for us. My Father Anthonio Kwaovi
Onipede taught me to keep my life very simple, yet remain a force to be
I am grateful to my Mother Joanna Ebunoluwa Onipede, who showed me that you can be in control of your immediate environment through Peace and Gentleness. This is not a trait you acquire from Emotional Intelligence or Neuro Linguistic Programming, but from a relationship with the Holy Spirit, because it’s Fruit of the Spirit. She taught me how to have and keep a healthy hygiene. Every time my mother heard the worst of me then, she always chose to believe the best of me, and will always tell me that she is praying for me.
Today God has answered her prayers.
Eugenia Mofoluwaso da-Silva nee Onipede, how can I forget those days you
took me to school, before going to your own school. Every time I remember
I shed tears, because you did it with love. You truly loved me as your
brother, and you treated me well. You are one of those that helped me to
develop confidence in life, and I am grateful to you.
Joan Oluwatomi Onipede, you were never going to have a brother that is a
mediocre, and so when nobody in the family was going to call me to order
then, because of the temper I had, YOU ALWAYS DID. I still remember your words
like” Yaovi, kilo man sie no to man se bi were ni gbami, ole na mi o,
sugbon emi a so oto fun e”(Yaovi, Whats wrong with you that you behave
like a crazy person sometimes, you can beat me, but I will always tell you
the truth). You were the last born, but by your unique ways, you earned
the respect of all of us in the Family.
James and John Martins, you are the only twins that I had as friends
growing up, you guys were extraordinary. You were Angels sent by God to
watch over me, and you did extremely well. May God reward your kindness to
Kenneth Olisa, what can I say, but that you are a very wonderful person,
and I still reserve a special place for you in my heart. You were my
friend during defining moments of my life, and always my peace in the
midst of the storms then. I needed a brother, and you became that brother.
Eventius Emeka Akuazoku, (Happy Birthday, July 6th) you are unique in
your ways. I can’t remember you having enemies while we were growing up,
yet you were friends with all types and manner of boys and girls. Anyone
who met you had no choice, but to love you, because u no dey send. Your
love for me was exceptional, and everyone knew you were my friend, because
you showed me off. I am grateful to you.
Declan Okpalaeke, you were very young, but quite matured. I knew I could
talk to you, and I did. You were like a refuge. I never had a need when I was around you. I was more like the question, and you were the answer, I was the sight, and you were the faith, I was the idea, and you were the actualization. I am grateful to you.
Femi Ayoola-Nelson, you just had to be there when you were. I mean who
would have been my friend at that time? We met everyone together, attended
parties together, and made plans to be somebody in life together. You were
remarkable no doubt. Thanks a lot.
Pastor Ayo Daniels, many are called but few are chosen, and you are
definitely one of the chosen ones. I have not only known you by the Gifts
of the Holy Spirit that you operate under, but also by HIS Fruits. Has
anyone met you, and not been blessed? Those of us around you have been
influenced by the fact that there is nothing you have today that was not
all given to you by God, and your Faith and Patience has given you a unique place
with God which is enviable. Thanks for all the Love you keep extending
towards me. I am grateful.
TO BE CONTINUED
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